Midsummer Midwinter

July 26th, 2019

It’s the middle of summer in the northern hemisphere, including record temperatures in Europe, but here in the “far south”, it is quite cold with some very welcome rain in Cape Town. All is fairly quiet on the Brian Wilson front, but at this stage, he is due back on the road in less than two weeks. 

Far More Than A Musician

July 17th, 2019

Just after I posted yesterday’s blog, I suddenly got the news that the great South African musician, Johnny Clegg, had passed away. Clegg’s fame spread well past South African shores, including massive concerts in France, and recognition in many parts of the world, including the USA. If you haven’t heard of him, a look at his Wikipedia bio,  will tell you that he was not just a writer and performer of great songs, but an important figure in the fight against apartheid, especially in winning the hearts and minds of white people that apartheid and racism were ridiculous and stupid -probably an even more direct role than the extraordinary story of the American musician Rodriguez.

I have personal memories of Johnny Clegg and his music – being aware of his songs as a pre-teenager, seeing a concert of his at my university, learning to gumboot dance to one of his songs for an international conference. He was such a huge part of being South African that one only realizes how immense his life was when he has left us. Everyone has spoken of his goodness as a person -the world is so much poorer without him.

Everything But The Brian XV: Time

July 16th, 2019

Another aching ballad from the brilliant Pacific Ocean Blue album, Time  combines an honest lyric with a beautiful melody and lovely arrangement sprinkled with some horns and violins. When Dennis sings “I’m the kind of guy who loves to mess around, know a lot of women, but they don’t fill my heart, with love completely free” , you know he is being honest and vulnerable.

Everything But The Brian XIV: Full Sail

July 3rd, 2019

Our next “brianless” Beach Boys minor classic is from the generally critically disliked L.A. (Light Album). However, this album contains a number of good Dennis and Carl songs, not least of all Full Sail. Like much of Carl’s best work, this beautiful ballad has a yearning for peace and harmony, something which was missing in the turbulent late 70s Beach Boys world.

23 Songs For Today

June 25th, 2019

1) Dancing Queen -ABBA
2) There Goes My Miracle -Bruce Springsteen
3)Little Girl Lost -Icicle Works
4) My Last Chance -Marvin Gaye
5) Checking Out (Double Clutch) -Marvin Gaye
6) Bohemian Rhapsody -Queen
7) Don’t Stop Me Now -Queen
8)Love of My Life -Queen
9)Archangel -Walker Brothers
10)The Amorous Humphrey Plugg -Scott Walker
11) Patriot- Scott Walker
12) Duchess Scott Walker
13) Itchycoo Park -Small Faces
14) There Is A Light That Never Goes Out -The Smiths
15)Rush And A Push And The Land Is Ours -The Smiths
16) True -Spandau Ballet
17)I Wanna Be Adored -The Stone Roses
18) Sixteen Bars The Stylistics
19) This Must Be The Place (Naive Melody) -Talking Heads
20) (Nothing But) Flowers -Talking Heads
21) Think It Over -The Thorns
22) It’s Not Unusual -Tom Jones
23) The Sun Ain’t Gonna Shine Anymore -The Walker Brothers

Lucky 77

June 20th, 2019

Happy 77th birthday, Brian Wilson- this birthday takes place under less happy circumstances but still with much hope for the future, and thanks for all that Brian Wilson has given us. Have a look at what I wrote seven years ago on Brian’s 70th birthday.

Wishing Brian

June 16th, 2019

Brian Wilson’s family have already thanked fans for the massive outpouring of support after Brian postponed his summer tour. If you do want to send a personal message of support, the place to send it appears to be Brian’s publicist at the following address

Get Well Brian Wilson
C/O Jean Sievers
2271 Cheremoya Ave
Los Angeles, CA 90068

You can also this email: GetWellBrianWilson@gmail.com

A Girl Is Back

June 12th, 2019

Brian Wilson may be away for a bit, but A Girl Called Eddy (Erin Moran) is very much back –here is some info  on her career and new album, and details of an upcoming radio interview with her.

…Or Not

June 6th, 2019

Murphy’s Law dictates that two days after I posted about Brian’s summer touring, his upcoming dates have been postponed. His statement on the postponement has been posted on his website and social media and is as follows

Dear friends,
It is with great regret that I need to postpone my upcoming June tour.
It is no secret that I have been living with mental illness for many decades. There were times when it was unbearable but with doctors and medications I have been able to live a wonderful, healthy and productive life with support from my family, friends and fans who have helped me through this journey.
As you may know in the last year or so I’ve had 3 surgeries on my back. The surgeries were successful and I’m physically stronger than I’ve been in a long time.
However, after my last surgery i started feeling strange and it’s been pretty scary for awhile. I was not feeling like myself. Mentally insecure is how I’d describe it. We’re not sure what is causing it but i do know that it’s not good for me to be on the road right now so I’m heading back to Los Angeles.
I had every intention to do these shows and was excited to get back to performing. I’ve been in the studio recording and rehearsing with my band and have been feeling better. But then it crept back and I’ve been struggling with stuff in my head and saying things I don’t mean and I don’t know why. Its something I’ve never dealt with before and we cant quite figure it out just yet.
I’m going to rest, recover and work with my doctors on this.
I’m looking forward to my recovery and seeing everyone later in the year.
The music and my fans keep me going and I know this will be something I can AGAIN overcome.
Love & Mercy,
Brian Wilson

We wish Brian all the best and especially some well-deserved rest – there is a clear intention to go back on the road, but even if he doesn’t tour again, it’s been a great 20 year ride.

Summer’s Here, And The Touring Starts

June 4th, 2019

Brian has already performed a one-off date at the Beachlife festival in California, but his summer touring starts off in earnest this Friday, with 31 dates scheduled until the end of September, including the dates with the Zombies.